PRECIOUS-Gold edges up after Syria strikes

    BENGALURU, April 16 (Reuters) - Gold prices edged higher
early on Monday, even as the dollar and equity markets firmed on
relief that weekend missile strikes against Syria by the United
States, France and Britain may be a one-off event. 
    * Spot gold        was up 0.1 percent at $1,346.1 an ounce
as of 0115 GMT after an initial dip, and U.S. gold futures
        rose 0.1 percent to $1,349.2 an ounce.
    * U.S., British and French forces pounded Syria with air
strikes early on Saturday in response to a poison gas attack
that killed dozens of people last week, in the biggest
intervention by Western powers against Syrian President Bashar
    * Western powers will study "options" if Syria's government
again uses chemical weapons, but nothing is planned as yet,
Britain's foreign minister said on Sunday, after raids on Syrian
targets triggered heated debate over their legality and
    * Share markets started firmer in Asia on Monday amid relief
U.S.-led strikes on Syria looked like being a one-off event that
avoided a direct confrontation with Russia, weighing on oil
prices and safe-haven Treasuries.            
    * The dollar firmed on Monday, hovering near a two-month
high against the yen, after the market gained some clarity
following military strikes on Syria by the United States and its
allies at the weekend.       
    * Russian President Vladimir Putin warned on Sunday that
further Western attacks on Syria would bring chaos to world
affairs, as Washington prepared to increase pressure on Russia
with new economic sanctions.             
    * Gold has risen more than 3 percent this year, buoyed by
international tensions and volatility in equities, but has yet
to emerge from a tight trading range in the face of an
expectation for rising U.S. interest rates, traders say.
    * The Federal Reserve will probably need to raise interest
rates at least three more times this year in the face of a
robust U.S. economy, even while possible trade disruptions pose
risks, a top Fed policymaker said on Friday.             
    * Inflation data last week that showed price pressures
increasing were unsurprising, St. Louis Federal Reserve
President James Bullard said on Friday as he downplayed the
significance for monetary policy.             
    * Hedge funds and money managers raised their net long
positions in COMEX gold and contracts in the week to April 10,
U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) data showed on
    * Physical gold demand in second-biggest consumer India saw
an uptick last week ahead of a key festival, although higher
prices weighed on sentiment across the broader Asian markets.

 (Reporting by Swati Verma in Bengaluru; editing by Richard